Indian media: Twitter backlash over Miss America

Nina Davuluri performed an Indian dance routine at the Miss America Competition Nina Davuluri performed an Indian dance at the Miss America Competition

Media in India are discussing the "shocking tweets" that followed the crowning of Indian-American Nina Davuluri as Miss America on Sunday and also shine a spotlight on PM Manmohan Singh's visit to the riot-hit Muzaffarnagar town.

Nina Davuluri, 24, became the target of what many saw as "racist" comments on social media within minutes after she won the title.

Many Twitter users in the US saw her as "non-American" because of her Indian background.

A barrage of comments voicing their "dislike and contempt over a non-American bagging the title" flooded Twitter, the India Today website reports.

"The tiara had barely been placed on her head and the customary tears of joy had just emerged when racist taunts erupted on social media, marring the moment of triumph for the first ever Miss America of Indian origin," says The Times of India.

"A 24-year-old from New York made history Sunday night as the first Indian American to be crowned Miss America, but was hit instantaneously by a racist backlash," wrote the Hindustan Times.

The Times of India, however, said that Ms Davuluri found support from some Twitter users. "Wow the hate that has come out since an Indian American won Miss America is sad. Guess we haven't come that far after all,'' one user tweeted.

Ms Davuluri too played down the harsh comments. "I have to rise above that. I always viewed myself as first and foremost American," the Hindustan Times quoted her as saying.

The Times of India, in another report, said Ms Davuluri's grandmother was busy receiving congratulatory messages in her home in the southern state of Andhra Pradesh.

"I am not surprised. I was always confident she would go places as I was aware of her abilities and dedication," the paper quoted Koteswaramma as saying.

In domestic news, newspapers and websites are discussing Mr Singh's attempt to "reach out" to people in the violence-hit town of Muzaffarnagar in Uttar Pradesh state.

Clashes between Hindus and Muslims erupted on 7 September, killing dozens and forcing thousands of flee their homes. The riots started when three men were killed after they protested against the alleged harassment of a woman.

Mr Singh, who visited the town on Monday, termed the riots a "very tragic incident" and added that the government would "ensure that the perpetrators of riots are given strict punishment", the Zee News website reported.

Some newspapers, however, wondered whether the visit by Mr Singh and senior Congress party chief Sonia Gandhi to the town had a political motive.

"The party (Congress) senses an opportunity to reach out to voters in this communally divided region by giving a healing touch to the affected," says the Deccan Herald.

Wrong vaccination

Meanwhile, newspaper reports said at least 114 children were admitted to hospitals in the eastern state of West Bengal on Sunday after a vaccination "goof-up".

"Sixty-seven children were hospitalised in Arambag near Calcutta after they were mistakenly given Hepatitis-B vaccines instead of polio drops on Sunday. At least 40 of them are still under observation," the CNN-IBN website reports.

The state government has ordered a probe into the incident.

In sports, India's Amit Kumar, 19, has won the silver medal in the 55kg category of the World wrestling championships in Budapest, The Times of India reports.

During the London Olympics last year, Sushil Kumar - the only Indian to have won a World gold in wrestling - had described the youngster as the "next star of Indian wrestling", the report adds.

BBC Monitoring reports and analyses news from TV, radio, web and print media around the world. For more reports from BBC Monitoring, click here. You can follow BBC Monitoring on Twitter and Facebook.

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